Sydney and NYE

Australia's flag
Oceania » Australia » New South Wales » Sydney
January 3rd 2016
Published: January 3rd 2016
Edit Blog Post

Thursday 31 December

New Years Eve

A long day today

We woke and gradually got ready to go out trying to plan what we might need for the day.

There are booths around Sydney, that are there to answer questions about the 2015SYDNYE (Sydney New Years Eve) and Pat had visited them a couple of times to get ideas and information. We had looked into some pay options, lots of them were really expensive and most were also sold out.

There are a number of vantage points which are set up to cater for the masses and we chose one at Milsons Point, over the other side looking back at the Opera House.

We left the room at 11.00 am and headed for the light rail. Pat had liked the Darling Harbour area and Harbourside retail area was somewhere we had yet to look at.

By about 12.00 pm, we had arrived and had a coffee, muffin and croissant to start the day at a delightful place called Cre8, just by the Hard Rock Cafe.

We then pottered around Harbourside for a while. When we had finished we were on the quayside and noticed that the ferry from here went to Milsons Point and thought that as there was nothing in particular we wanted to do in this vicinity, that we would start our journey towards the chosen firework viewing area.

The ferry network is also on the Opal cards so we just tapped on and waited for the ferry.

It was very busy and people carrying lots of supplies for the day ahead. You could also see tents pitched and thousands of people already lining the water in the best viewing slots.

We got off at Milsons Point and tried to find our bearings. We had crisps and biscuits for later but needed to eat some sort of meal if we could, to carry us through the day.

We walked up the hill and to the town with hundreds of people milling around. At the top of the town was an Italian and unbelievably we managed to get a seat straight away.

We both ordered spaghetti bolognaise, for a good lump of carbohydrate.

Then back to the riverside. We eventually chose a spot and at about 3.00 pm sat down for the long wait to midnight.

What can I say, we waited and waited the time going by. The river was a constant distraction with a variety of craft going by. There were toilet faclities and some food vendors to supply the masses.

There was a childrens firwork display at 9.00 pm. and lit boats parading around the harbour.

The people kept coming and coming and coming. We protected our space.

Eventually midnight struck and the fireworks went off in spectacular fashion.

We knew the journey options back but were by no means sure how it was going to pan out.

It was of course all managed by the Police and authorities. We were herded back to North Sydney station and on to a train to Central.

There were hundreds of thousands of people. Wall to wall on the street. We shuffled along and eventually got onto a train. They were leaving every two and a half minutes.

Back at Central we headed to the light rail with options in mind if it was too busy, but there were very few people waiting and we got on the first train and were off with no problem. Back to the hotel at 02.39 am. Thank you Sydney.

I am sure that people will complain but at the end of the day we had a good journey and the sheer number of people they deal with is staggering.

Friday 1 January

We woke about 9.00 am and put the kettle on.

Our main activity today is a concert at the Sydney Opera house at 5 pm.

We left the hotel at 11.00 am and headed to Pyrmont bay on the light rail network.

Cre8 does a breakfast and we knew it was going to be open today so we were there at 12.00 pm. A large breakfast and a small breakfast started the day wonderfully.

Next we were on a mission to the large retailer David Jones (like a Debenhams) in George Street.

Pat and I have both loved the little bird called a fairy wren, which we have seen on our travels a few times over the last few weeks. It has neon blue colouring and is beautiful. Anyway we have seen that a particular coffee mug has a picture of the bird on it and been trying to track one down. Pat has seen that David Jones has one on it's website so we were off to see it we could buy one.

So, first we had to find the shop which we did. Then after scouring a couple of floors we managed to find them. At a price of AUS$9.95 they are not actually expensive and of course we had to buy two.

Next was the Australian Museum, this is much more of a general museum, very much a reminder in building styles of old UK museums. AUS$15.00 each entrance.

With lots of stuffed animals, skeletons and boxes of moths etc. of a very victorian legacy of the rich collectors of their day, who bequethed stuff to the museums.

Some interesting stuff and we toured all the galleries. A cafe was up on the fourth floor, with a great view of the surrounding area, which we partook of.

We then slowly made our way to the Opera house. We encountered streams of young people heading towards the Botanic gardens for a music concert, in the other direction to us. An interesting mixture of clothing or lack of it as the case may be, well at least they weren't going to get cold!

We arrived at 4.10 and by the time we had dropped the bag in the cloakroom and Pat had bought a Pandora bead in the shop, time had moved on.

The Northern terrace overlooks the harbour area and where we were last night and of course it has a bar so Pat finally had a chance to raise a glass of sparkling wine to the New Year.

The concert was four singers doing major songs from various operas and introduced by a really nice chap called Guy Noble who is a very talented pianist.

It was very enjoyable and the time flew and we were outside again in no time. We walked to Darling Harbour and had a Chinese meal. Then caught the train to the hotel arriving at 9.10 pm, exhausted.

Saturday 2 January

Cloudy. A visit to Bondi beach is on the cards today.

We woke and slowly got ready, leaving the room at 11.00 am. Up to the light rail station and on to Central station.

Our Opal card is not costing anything at the moment as we have hit one of the maximums, at which point it doesn't cost anything more. The cycle is for a week and runs Monday to Sunday we believe.

At Central we changed to the main line service and found our way to the train to Bondi junction.

It is only about 20 minutes and at Bondi junction there is an express bus service to Bondi beach, which we took.

At the front we went to the beach and looked at the thousands of people on the beach. It is actually quite a narrow beach and not as impressive as I was expecting.

Then on to a restaurant just off the front called Neighbourhood. The music was load but the food was great.

Then off back to the City. The original thought was to get a bus back to the station then a train back to the city. However the next bus that came along said Circular Quay and we knew where that was in the City, so we just stayed on the bus all the way back. We arrived back about 3.00 pm.

As we had more time to play with we went to Paddy's Market and pottered a while.

Downstairs on the ground floor were lots of market stall type places, but upstairs was a more normal retail environment.

We bought a number of things and had a very succesful shopping experience.

A detour through Chinatown to have a peek and buy some more stuff.

Then on to Darling Harbour for some dinner. We found an Italian place Eat Love Pizza and had a very enjoyable meal.

Then to Pyrmont bay and back on the light rail. Travel cost today AUS$0.00.

Back to the hotel at 7.40 pm.

Sunday 3 January

Cloudy. Off to the zoo.

We managed to leave the room before 11 today, 10.45 am to be precise. The usual light rail up to the City.

It was cooler out than expected and Pat hadn't brought a thick top out, so we took a side trip to Paddy's Market and purchased a new fleece for AUS$15.00 which Pat had been thinking about buying yesterday.

Back on the light rail and up to Central. Then a change to the train up to Circular Quay. Then over to the ferries.

Diamond Princess was alongside today.

Wharf 2 and a short wait for the ferry to Taronga Zoo. There were a large number of people along with us, but we all got on the ferry. 15 minutes and we were at the Zoo. A shuttle bus to the top entrance and we paid our AUS$46.00 each for the visit.

There was a cafe so we had a snack for our breakfast.

Then into the Zoo itself. We found koalas and Australian animals. The duck billed platypus was on our list of things to see, we found his enclosure, but he proved to be elusive and was not seen by us. Pat saw Otters which she loves.

Elephants, Gorillas and many other animals, as you would expect.

It rained heavy showers - even the gorillas took shelter - and we sheltered for a while, it stopped but started again, so we decided to return to the City.

We managed to just catch the 3.00 pm ferry and were back to Circular Quay. Then to Central on the train and change to light rail to Convention.

We went to Cyren restaurant and had a lovely dinner. Back on the light rail to Taverners Hill and returned to the room at 5.20 pm.

Travel cost today AUS$ 0.00

The other plans we had for today were shelved due to the rain.

Packing tonight and we will be going to the airport tomorrow evening for our flight home.


Tot: 0.312s; Tpl: 0.011s; cc: 11; qc: 49; dbt: 0.1269s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.2mb